Weave vs Wig: The Difference, Which One Is Better?

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Weave vs Wig The Difference, Which One Is Better

Weaves or wigs offer a solution to add length, volume, or thickness to natural hair. But wearing either of them is a matter of personal preference.

As a rule of thumb, choosing a hairpiece that suits your hair condition, style, and routine is always best. However, deciding between weaves and wigs can be a big deal, given their disparities.

Below, we compiled a simple guide to help you learn about a weave and wig. You will also discover how to decide which one of the two is best for your needs.

Let’s get started!

Weave vs Wig: What’s the Difference?

Weaves and wigs may serve similar purposes, but they are quite different. Here are the major differences to help you pick the right option.

What Is a Wig?

A wig looks like a hat with human hair or synthetic hair, or animal hair attached to it. It covers the entire head; you can wear it and take it off easily. However, there are half wigs that only cover a portion of the head.

Usually, a wig offers a temporary styling option and may or may not come with lace as their cap construction. If the wig has lace, it will look more realistic than those with basic caps.

Furthermore, wigs may come with combs or adjustable straps to secure them. But you can also use wig glues or tapes during installation for added security.

what is a wig

What Is a Weave?

A weave, also called sew-in extensions, is a bunch of hair pieces sewn onto your natural hair. They are specially designed to add length and volume to natural hair. Besides, they may cover a portion or the entire head, depending on how you install them.

To install weaves, you should first braid your natural hair down into cornrows. Then, sew hair wefts on the braided hair using a curved needle and thread. [1]

what is a weave

The Advantages of Wigs

Wigs help transform hairstyles and are very popular among women today. Here are some of their benefits.

For Everyone

Wigs usually cover the entire head and are a great way of creating different hairstyles. Anyone can use them to change their look, including those suffering from thinning, balding, or hair loss.

The full hair coverage will leave you feeling more beautiful and confident. Not only that, but you can also switch up the look depending on your outfit or occasion.


You can style a wig instantly and create any hairstyle anytime and anywhere to get the look you desire.

On top of that, they are easy to put on and remove, especially when not secured using adhesives or tapes. Furthermore, a wig is good for sleeping as you can remove it easily at the end of the day. All you have to do is remove the clips and tabs, then take the wig off.

The installation will only take a few minutes. This is unlike in weaves, where you’ll have to spend several hours to install. The process involves sewing, which is quite lengthy.

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A wig protects your natural hair and promotes the growth of strong and healthy hair. With wigs, your hair gets a break from regular hair maintenance and styling routines. 

Also, the damaged hair strands will be well covered and get enough time to recover. So you will avoid dust and direct sun, which could be damaging to the hair. 

More Options

Wigs are so easy to switch out, have several variations, and there is no limit to the look a person can create. They come in different styles, lengths, and colors to suit everyone’s needs. The good thing is that you can try any hairstyle without interfering with your natural hair.

Also, you can choose from curled and straight hair textures to match your natural hair. The hair type varies from synthetic to human hair.

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The Advantages of Weaves

Many prefer weaves since they do not come off as easily as wigs. Here are some of the advantages of weaves.


A weave offers a more natural look than a wig as it blends with your natural hair. When properly installed, a weave will look just like your own hair, and nobody will tell it isn’t your real hair.

I recommend human hair weaves since they are more believable than synthetic ones. But if you prefer synthetic hair, use high-quality fiber, as they are pretty realistic.

women with wigs

More Secure

With a weave, you attach it to individual strands of your hair, thus making it more secure than a wig. The thread used to sew it holds the hair wefts firmly to the cornrows. So you don’t have to worry about the weave moving or slipping.

As they are tightly secured, you can go to sleep with them or even for swimming, and they will not come off.

Save Time

Most people like weaves because they can last up to 6 weeks once installed. 

On top of that, they are low-maintenance and do not require many products and much time for styling. Simple flat ironing and you are good to go! This differs from wigs that need daily installation, which can be a hassle for some wearers.

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Weave vs Wig: Which One to Choose?

Doing your research before picking between a weave and a wig is important. Here are some simple tips to help you choose.

Choosing Wigs

When picking a wig, consider if the following factors apply to your needs.

Various Hairstyles 

One of the biggest benefits of having a wig is that they offer a quick way to switch up hairstyles. 

Not only that, but you will also be able to try new hair shades without having to dye your bio hair. Wigs are available in various textures, styles, colors, and lengths. They make it easy to change your look to match different outfits and occasions as desired.

capless wig-2

Bald or Damaged Hair

You can get a wig if you want an alternative to hair growth treatments. Or if you want to take a break from natural hair styling due to hair thinning or balding.

Generally, wigs are beneficial in protecting natural hair from damage. If the hair strands are brittle or damaged, wigs will keep them covered to give them enough time to recover.

Also, wigs do not add pressure or weight to delicate hair, unlike weaves. For this reason, they are great for damaged hair or hair loss.

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Regular Hair Care

With a wig, you can remove it and access your bio hair anytime. Washing or conditioning the hair is easier, especially for those who do deep conditioning treatments every other week.

Therefore, go for a wig if you want the freedom to wash and treat the scalp as desired. Unlike weaves, the weight of the water will not cause tension on the hair strands or cause breakage.

Choosing Weaves

Choose a weave after putting these factors into consideration.

Exercise a Lot

Weaves are ideal for an active lifestyle or sports like swimming, running, or working out.

They are usually very secure as they are reinforced with a thick hair-weaving thread. Therefore, you do not have to worry about losing wefts even during vigorous exercises.

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Healthy Hair

Weaves are best installed on healthy hair, ideally medium to thick hair. These hair textures are strong enough to handle the stress of being weighed down.

For thin hair, not so much! The weight and tension may create constant strain, causing the hair strands to break or fall out.

However, it would help to keep the weave on for only a short time to get the best results. Also, trim the hair often before weaving to prevent split ends from developing.

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Long-Term Style

Go for a weave if you want a style that does not require daily installation or styling. They can stay on your head for up to 6 weeks without daily readjustments.

This is a long time compared to a wig which you have to take on and off with frequent styling. Once it is sewn in, it will not move or slip.

Final Thoughts

As you can see, a weave is quite different from a wig, but you can wear any of them, depending on your preference. So which one is your favorite, between weaves and wigs, and why? Let us know in the comments below!

Author: Charity Nasike


Charity Nasike is a passionate wig wearer and basically has diverse knowledge related to wigs' care and maintenance. When she's not writing, she's either in the kitchen trying out new recipes or on social media advising fellow ladies tricks to apply on their wigs.

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